Tiger Woods flew to Italy last Monday to surprise girlfriend Lindsey Vonn as she was racing to win a record-breaking 63rd women's World Cup ski race. He didn't want people to know he was there, so he decided to wear a rather bizarre ski mask, one with a skull print on it.
"I still had the mask on so no one would know who I was, trying to blend in, because there's not a lot of brown dudes at the ski race," Woods said Tuesday at the Waste Management Phoenix Open. "That was whole idea why I wore the mask."
So why that design? Woods explained the mask (also known as a balaclava) was an homage to the video game "Ghost Recon." That drew a blank look from the questioning reporter.
"Have you ever played 'Ghost Recon'?" asked the 39-year-old father of two.
However, when Woods took off his mask, he was photographed with a missing tooth. Woods stuck by his story on Tuesday that the missing tooth -- and another chipped tooth -- were damaged by a cameraman as Woods was near a huddle of them after Vonn's race to try to offer congratulations.
"The dude with one of the video cameras on his shoulder was kneeling right in front of me, stood up, turned and caught me square in the mouth. So he chipped that one, cracked the other one," Woods explained. "And then I'm trying to keep this mask on so the blood's not all over the place. Luckily he hit the one that I had the root canal on - that's the one that chipped. But the other one had to be fixed as well because it had cracks all through it."
Woods said he was in so much pain he couldn't eat or drink and hard a hard time breathing. He landed an emergency appointment with an oral surgeon and had the problem fixed the next day.